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Of Human Bondage: The 2001 Human Rights Watch Film Festival

The Human Rights Watch International Film Festival was created in 1988 to advance public education on human rights issues and concerns using the medium of film. Each year, the festival exhibits the finest human rights films and videos in theaters and on cable television throughout the world — a reflection of both the scope of the festival and its increasingly global appeal. The festival includes feature-length and short fiction films, documentaries, animation, and experimental works.

In selecting films for the festival, Human Rights Watch concentrates equally on artistic merit and human rights content. The festival encourages filmmakers around the world to address human rights subject matter in their work and presents films and videos from both new and established international filmmakers. A majority of each year’s screenings are followed by discussions with the filmmakers and Human Rights Watch staff on the issues represented in each work.

The Human Rights Watch International Film Festival brings its program of challenging and provocative films and videos to the San Francisco Bay Area during the weekend of January 25-27, 2001. The 2001 festival combines a probing mix of intriguing and controversial films, both documentary and fiction films that focus on human rights issues from around the globe. The International Film Festival is particularly important to the mission of Human Rights Watch, for it dramatizes and personalizes the collective search for human dignity in the modern world.

This year, the Festival is collaborating with three venues — Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, Pacific Film Archive in Berkeley, and Rafael Film Center in San Rafael. This year’s lineup includes: Bread and Roses by Ken Loach, Long Night’s Journey into Day by Deborah Hoffmann and Frances Reid, The Diplomat by Tom Zubrycki, Pripyat by Nikolaus Geyhalter, Good Kurds, Bad Kurds: No Friends but the Mountains by Kevin McKiernan, Public Enemy by Jens Meurer, Trade Off by Shaya Mercer, and The Widow of St. Pierre by Patrice Leconte. Reviews of many of the films are available at

You can find a complete schedule of events by visiting

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